It doesn’t get more Italian than cannelloni. But, we’re in France, so I’ve got a slight modification to this Italian Stuffed Spinach and Ricotta Cannelloni to make it “à la francaise.” No big surprises are in store, and I’m sure some of you can guess the special ingredient addition as I recently used it in my Chicken Tetrazzini recipe. It has a slight softening effect on the spinach flavor, and blends right into everything else. The stuffing is nice and full of spinach, and when it gets pressed out of the cannelloni, it holds nicely together kind of like ravioli filling, but way better!
This recipe calls for about 1 1/2 cups cooked pressed steamed spinach. Pressed, meaning, literally press it to get rid of the excess water. I filled my steamer pot to the brim with fresh spinach and all that was left after cooking and pressing is what you see on the cutting board below. Oh, and please ignore the mushrooms, they are not part of this recipe. But the basil is, as is the egg which you see behind.
Start by whisking an egg, adding the salt, pepper, pinch of nutmeg, and… drumroll please… creme fraiche! Yay! When in Normandy, do as the Normands do…We’re also being true to our full-fat diet!
Use about 3 tbsp plain tomato sauce mixed with 2 tsp olive oil and spread over the bottom of a Pyrex pan as follows:
Hubby just pulled in the driveway with the ricotta I need for this recipe, so go back to your mixing bowl, add the spinach, basil and a full pot of Ricotta (about 1 1/2 cups). Stir well. The mixture should be gloppy, so that it will stay inside the cannelloni pasta. If yours is too runny, add a little more ricotta and that will thicken things up.
Stuff the little cannellonis with the ricotta filling using a small teaspoon. Coat the tops of the cannellonis with creme fraiche by using a spatula. Sprinkle shredded Emmenthal and Comté cheese on the top. Bake in the oven at 200C (392F) for 25 minutes. I cooked mine with a tinfoil over the top for the first 15 to ensure the pasta didn’t get too crispy.
Et voila! Yummy cannellonis ready for 3 hungry tummies.
It hailed and snowed this morning. And yet, towards the end of the meal we even had an intermittent ray of sunshine! Vive le printemps! I popped outside with my trusted Canon EOS 700D and presto, a yummy delicious sunny plate:
Et oui, that’s a day in the life of a foodblogger.
PS- and a special hello to Gaetan, my most recent email subscriber, who, like my recipe, is Italian and lives in France… !